Esar Met

Esar Met, 21, was booked early this morning into the Salt Lake County Jail in connection with the murder of a missing 7-year-old girl.

Met was taken to South Salt Lake police headquarters Tuesday evening after the body of Hser Nay Moo was discovered in a basement apartment in the same complex where she lived, 2250 S. 500 East.

Met was read his Miranda rights and, "admitted to attempting to confine the victim to the residence by force, resulting in her death. (Met) also admitted to attempting to conceal the body and other forensic evidence," according to a Salt Lake County Jail report.

Met was booked into jail just after 7 a.m. Wednesday for investigation of aggravated murder, child kidnapping and evidence tampering. He was being held Wednesday morning on no bail.

A total of five people were taken to South Salt Lake police headquarters for questioning late Tuesday. Chief Chris Snyder said at this time, only one person was arrested.

The discovery of Moo's body was a tragic end to a search that began Monday night after neighbors reported the young girl was missing.

Moo and her four brothers, father and mother, are refugees from Myanmar, formerly known as Burma. They lived in a refugee camp for 20 years before coming to America and Utah last August.

Moo was last seen sometime between 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Monday after she had been playing outside on her front patio and stepped in her apartment momentarily for a drink. Two of her brothers, ages 11 and 3 weeks, were home at the time along with an aunt who was baby-sitting.

Hser Nay Moo's body was found in a bathroom in the apartment. Police from several agencies, along with the FBI and the Utah Attorney General's Office, had been working since Monday night, going door-to-door, checking each apartment in the complex as well as surrounding residences and businesses.

The apartment where Moo's body was found was the last unit in the complex that needed to be cleared. Investigators could not find anyone home to consent to a search until about 7 p.m. Tuesday and did not have enough evidence to forcibly enter. Inside the apartment, Moo's body was found in a bathroom, Snyder said. The cause of death was not revealed Wednesday morning, but Snyder said there were signs of trauma.

The case had many similarities to the abduction and murder of Destiny Norton, a 5-year-old girl who was kidnapped in 2006 after being lured out of her backyard by a neighbor. Her body was found in plastic storage bin in the basement.

Many of the federal and Salt Lake police investigators who worked the Norton case were asked to assist in the search for Moo.

"It was crucial. I can't emphasize how important it was to have people who went through this before," Snyder said of having those investigators help work the case. "They give a world of advice, of experience."

It was unknown Wednesday morning when the Salt Lake County District Attorney's Office would file formal charges against Met.

A press conference was expected to be held sometime late Wednesday afternoon after an autopsy had been completed.

A check of court records showed Met did not have any adult criminal record in Utah.


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